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June 5, 2018 — California Primary Election
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Special District

Hawthorne Elementary School District
Measure HSD - 55% Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results

Passed

4,076 votes yes (74.14%)

1,422 votes no (25.86%)

100% of precincts reporting (29/29).

To repair aging classrooms, ensure student health, safety and achievement and keep pace with technology, upgrade aging plumbing, electrical, lighting, heating/ventilation, safety/security systems, shall this Hawthorne School District measure be adopted to repair, construct, acquire classrooms, sites/equipment, and issue $59,000,000 in bonds, at legal rates, levy on average 3 cents/$100 assessed value ($3,000,000 annually) while bonds are outstanding, require independent audits/oversight, and all money for local schools?

What is this proposal?

Measure Details — Official information about this measure

Impartial analysis / Proposal

Mary C. Wickham, County Counsel

Approval of Measure HSD (“Measure”) would authorize the Hawthorne School District (“District”), to issue general obligation bonds in an amount not to exceed $59,000,000. The Measure was placed on the ballot by the Board of Trustees ("Board”) of the District by Resolution No.14.

Proceeds from the sale of the bonds authorized by the Measure shall be used only for the purposes specified in the Measure, including, but not limited to, repairing aging classrooms, bathrooms, and windows; replacing water pipes and drinking fountains; improving accessibility for disabled persons; upgrading heating/ventilation, plumbing, and gas lines; upgrading fire alarms and safety systems; and upgrading classroom labs, computer systems, electrical systems, and wiring for computer technology and internet access. Other specified developments include improving student safety with campus security systems, through lighting, cameras, locks, emergency communication systems, and security fencing; ensuring playground structures meet current health and safety standards; and repairing and improving the District’s central office, the maintenance yard, print shop, and other District locations. Bond proceeds may not be expended on teacher and administrator salaries and other operating expenses.

The Board shall cause independent performance and financial audits to be conducted annually to ensure that bond proceeds are spent only for projects identified in the Measure. The Board shall appoint an independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee (“Committee”) in compliance with Education Code section 15278 no later than 60 days after the Board enters the election results in its minutes. The Committee will ensure that bond proceeds are spent as specified in the Measure and as provided by law. The District shall create an account into which proceeds of the bond shall be deposited and shall comply with the reporting requirements of Government Code section 53410.

The bonds shall not exceed the maximum interest rate or maturity as allowed by law. The tax levy authorized to secure bonds shall not exceed the Proposition 39 limits per 100,000 of taxable property in the District when assessed valuation is projected by the District to increase.

According to the District’s Tax Rate Statement, the best estimate of the highest tax rate required to fund the bond issue, which is estimated to be fiscal year 2019-20, is $30.00 per $100,000, based on a projection of assessed valuation available when the District filed its Tax Rate Statement.

This Measure requires a fifty-five percent (55%) vote for passage.

Tax rate

An election will be held in the Hawthorne School District (the “District”) on June 5, 2018, to authorize the sale of up to $59,000,000 in bonds of the District to finance improvements to educational facilities as described in the measure. If such bonds are authorized and sold, principal and interest on the bonds will be payable only from the proceeds of ad valorem tax levies made upon the taxable property in the District. The following information is provided in compliance with Sections 9400-9404 of the Elections Code of the State of California. Such information is based upon the best estimates and projections presently available from official sources, upon experience within the District and other demonstrable factors.

Based upon the foregoing and projections of the District’s assessed valuation, the following information is provided:

1. The best estimate of the average annual tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund this bond issue over the entire duration of the bond debt service, based on a projection of assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is 3 cents per $100 of assessed valuation (or $30.00 per $100,000 of assessed value). The final fiscal year in which it is anticipated that the tax will be collected is 2056-57.
2. The best estimate of the highest tax rate which would be required to be levied to fund this bond issue, based on a projection of assessed valuations available at the time of filing of this statement, is 3 cents per $100 of assessed valuation (or $30.00 per $100,000 of assessed value). It is estimated that such rate would be levied starting in fiscal year 2019-20.
3. The best estimate of the total debt service, including the principal and interest that would be required to be repaid if all the bonds are issued and sold, is approximately $114 million.

Voters should note the estimated tax rate is based on the assessed value (not market value) of taxable property on the County’s official tax rolls. In accordance with Education Code Section 15100 subparagraph (c), the Board has obtained reasonable and informed projections of assessed property valuations that take into consideration projections (if any) of assessed property valuations made by the County Assessor. In addition, taxpayers eligible for a property tax exemption, such as the homeowner’s exemption, will be taxed at a lower effective tax rate than described above. Property owners should consult their own property tax bills and tax advisors to determine their property’s assessed value and any applicable tax exemptions.

The attention of all voters is directed to the fact that the foregoing information is based upon projections and estimates only. The actual tax rates and the years in which they will apply may vary from those presently estimated, due to variations from these estimates in the timing of bond sales, the amount of bonds sold and market interest rates at the time of each sale, and actual assessed valuations over the term of repayment of the bonds. The date of sale and the amount of bonds sold at any given time will be determined by the District based on its need for construction funds and other factors. The actual interest rates at which the bonds will be sold will depend on the bond market at the time of sale. Actual future assessed valuations will depend upon the amount and value of taxable property within the District as determined by the County Assessor in the annual assessment and the equalization process. Accordingly, the actual tax rates and the years in which such rates are applicable may vary from those presently estimated as above stated.

HELEN E. MORGAN, Ed.D.
Superintendent of the
Hawthorne School District

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Arguments FOR

Vote YES for HSD – repair and update local schools in the Hawthorne School District to give all our students the tools necessary for success.

Maximizing every students potential to achieve educational excellence requires suitable environments for student learning.

Specifically Measure HSD will:
- Create a more inclusive and welcoming learning environment
- Modernize outdated classrooms, restrooms, and school facilities
- Provide well maintained and efficient learning environments by repairing deteriorating plumbing and replacing outdated heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems
- Enhance campus security
- Increase student access to modern technology

Fiscal accountability is required by law:
- All funds raised by Measure HSD benefit local Hawthorne School District students - not a penny can be taken by the state or other school districts
- An independent citizens’ oversight committee ensures funds are spent as promised
- No funds can be used for administrator salaries

A YES vote for Measure HSD is a vote for the future of our students.

DR. EUGENE M. KRANK
President, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

CRISTINA CHIAPPE
Vice President, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

ALEXANDRE MONTEIRO
Clerk, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

LUCIANO A. AGUILAR
Member, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

SERGIO R. MORTARA
Member, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

Arguments AGAINST

Parents, do you hold your children accountable?

Supporting our schools is good. Wasting your money on vague, unenforceable promises is bad.

Don’t be deceived. District’s campaign is funded by vendors who will likely benefit from bond spending. (pay-to-play?) Beware high-priced marketers masquerading as “parents, teachers, and community leaders.”

Vote No on Measure HSD. Why?
- It’s virtually, word-for-word, identical to every other bond measure written by lawyers and advisors who made $3,605,783 (paid by you, with interest) from facilities bonds since 2005.
- Did you hear about a list of projects? Why isn’t there a list of SPECIFIC projects in Measure HSD? Because it would restrict the District spending to ONLY those things.
- Can you trust District? Why did it ignore oversight laws over many years for Measure H (2004) ($24,000,000)? Measure H (2008) ($20,000,000)?
- Did you know that District issued $42,574,549 in facilities bonds since 2005? $74,718,588 since 1997? Where has it ALL gone?
- Did you know District issued interest only bonds 7 times? Poway Unified taxpayers ended up paying 10 times the amount borrowed for similar bonds.

Current law permits a bare majority of voters (55%) to approve Measure HSD provided “… that BEFORE they vote, voters will be given a list of specific projects their bond money will be used for…”. Measure HSD is required to be a “list of the specific school facilities projects to be funded.” Measure HSD’s intentionally vague language gives District a BLANK CHECK with NO ACCOUNTABILITY.

Don’t waste your hard-earned money on vague promises. Did District keep promises from Measure H (2008)? Measure H (2004)? It spent $74,718,588 and still has “deteriorating heating, ventilation, plumbing and electrical systems?”

Bond money is like drugs. Don’t give District another fix. Just say NO!

Want more evidence of District’s deception? http://bit.ly/NoHawthorneBond

G. RICK MARSHALL
Chief Financial Officer, California Taxpayers Action Network

Replies to Arguments FOR

Just tired old cliches written by slick lawyers and advisors!

Back in March, did you know Hawthorne School District had ordered an election for a huge, new, $114,000,000 tax on your home? Do you feel compelled to reward reckless spending and poor management? If not for us, you wouldn’t get the whole story.

NO ADMINISTRATOR SALARIES?
Constitution says no salaries. Statutes say no salaries. Resolution, question, measure, and argument say no salaries. Guess what lawyers snuck in! Hint: “school administrator salaries.” Salaries will be paid. You can take that to the bank.

FACTS
How did District get to $59,000,000? It’s maximum they can tax in one measure.
Measure HSD is a contract. Have you read the fine print? Besides District salaries, what else does it pay for? -- “staff training,” “lease obligations,” “central office,” and on and on.
Are schools REALLY falling apart? Have you ever read School Accountability Report Cards? (sarconline.org) Four school facilities are rated “exemplary,” seven “good.” Not a “heating, ventilation, plumbing and electrical” problem in the lot. Who’s being deceptive and dishonest here?

District’s spent $74,718,588 for these promises in Measure A (1997) ($28,000,000), Measure H (2004) ($24,000,000), Measure H (2008) ($20,000,000). Why pay for it again? Have you ever seen oversight reports?

BOTTOM LINE
Can you trust District? Seen enough yet? When you’re not looking, will District breach law, its promises, and your trust?
Would you really agree to written contract where promises weren’t explicitly, unambiguously written into it?
Don’t be deceived! Don’t sign blank check. Vote NO! http://bit.ly/NoHawthorneBond

G. RICK MARSHALL
Chief Financial Officer, California Taxpayers Action Network

Replies to Arguments AGAINST

A YES vote for Measure HSD is a vote for the future of our students and our community. The Hawthorne School District takes pride in its history of thoughtful and responsible decision-making. Accountability to our families and community has been and continues to be a top priority in the Hawthorne School District.

The past bonds of the Hawthorne School District resulted in new classrooms, two gymnasiums, initial installation of security cameras at all sites, and school site upgrades. The Hawthorne School District Bond Oversight Committees carefully reviewed all past bond expenditures and determined that they were all allowable and appropriately made.

Most of the schools in the Hawthorne School District were constructed over sixty years ago. In order to keep up with community standards and prepare students to compete in the global market, we must have schools that meet the needs of the community and our students. Please help our students achieve educational excellence by improving their learning environments.

A YES vote on Measure HSD is a vote for the future of Hawthorne.

DR. EUGENE M. KRANK
President, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

CRISTINA CHIAPPE
Vice President, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

ALEXANDRE MONTEIRO
Clerk, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

LUCIANO A. AGUILAR
Member, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

SERGIO R. MORTARA
Member, H.S.D. Board of Trustees

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